While new homes are built to a much higher thermal efficiency, we still have relatively old housing stock in the UK. This includes some homes that will be extremely difficult and expensive to retrofit with energy efficiency measures. In addition, the installation of energy efficiency measures are often not a priority for many homeowners or are out of reach for others, such as those in rented accommodation. Overall, more than 29 million homes will need a low-carbon intervention to achieve net-zero and that intervention will be different for every home. People will need to make choices about the way their home is heated. Navigating the market for these new technologies will prove challenging for all but the most engaged, technology savvy consumers. Yet these choices will be vitally important. Changing the way our homes are heated is vital to meet the UK’s net zero carbon emission target. Choosing low carbon heat options could be costly, confusing and difficult. These decisions will have a huge impact on the way people live in their homes. This report considers how people might make these choices in the future and will this choice, as we understand it today, need to be the same? We draw out 3 key lessons: Early communication will be vital: the way people react to any policy that restricts their choice will depend on their understanding of the government’s wider priorities; Government will be expected to mitigate risks: particularly if low carbon heat options are made mandatory, consumers will expect government to minimise any risks that they might be exposed to; Consumers will want to retain control in some areas: people who have less control over the heat system in their home will need extra reassurance about cost and quality. Citizens Advice is calling for the government to establish a net zero homes guarantee. The guarantee should be a government-backed scheme to give people confidence to install measures needed to install low-carbon heating systems and energy efficiency measures. A guarantee would help people to make informed decisions, and establish simple, enforceable, protections, so people can engage with confidence. Achieving the transition to low carbon heat will only be possible if we inform, protect and support people, with the changes that we all have to make to our homes.
Citizens Advice 14th Aug 2020 read more »
Hundreds of homes and buildings across Cardiff and Bridgend will receive low-carbon energy from new heat network projects thanks to a £8 million boost announced by the UK Government today (12 August) The funding will develop a new system of distribution pipes taking excess heat from a central source such as energy generated from waste in Cardiff, and a Combined Heat and Power plant with thermal storage facility in Bridgend. These sources will then supply heat to public buildings within the town and city centre, and can easily connect to new, lower carbon heat sources in the future.
BEIS 13th Aug 2020 read more »